dog obedience training, how to train a trainer

sit Max!

Dog obedience training is a myth.

Why would I say that?. Why would I waste my time writting about something I believe as false? Not true at all.

The words seems to indicate the owner/trainer knows the definition of the phrase and the dog is expected to merrily conform to a set of guide-lines that to him might as well have been written by aliens.

There's allot more to it than that and we start with one simple guide-line.

Truth is, the owner needs to be trained and the dog needs to be taught !

Why we all need well trained dogs:

  1. First off, it's better in the long run to have a solid foundation for your pet to build on. Something as simple as proper "sit" tells us that our dog "get's it", and the dog understands he is praised for great performance.
    This is an excellent way to get our pet to like learning and possibly avoid some behavioral problems in the future.

  2. Dogs are more likely accepted with a calm and well balanced demeanor in public and in the home. This benefits each party as dogs are very social by nature.

  3. It's safer for your dog to be obedient. Unfortunately, most dogs that end up in shelters have little or no dog obedience training. It's safer for you too and others as it decreases any lunging tendency's if on a leash, or jumping up on strangers.

  4. Obedience training stimulates a dogs need to exercise it's mind.
    All dogs can learn, and dog training is a great exercise to relieve boredom and possible behavioral problems.
    Also, a dog that knows how to "fetch" and "come" can increase it's activity distance 3 or 4 fold on your average walk.

  5. Finally, dog obedience training increases the bond you have with your dog. It's really a great reward for both of you to be completely comfortable with each other. You can trust your dog to be well behaved and disciplined in all situations

So what works?

There's probably a million views on this one, about the same as the amount of products available. I admit, I bought my fair share of dog obedience training tools. Some work and others ended up in the trash. There is underlying thread in each system that does work.

  • Don't Punish

  • Patience

  • Keep it Simple

  • Repetition

  • Rewards and Praise

Never punish your dog when things go wrong in training. It'll only send the wrong message and undermine your goals.
Your pet won't be willing to learn if the only gain it see's is negative. Positive reinforcement works because it sends the correct signals that dogs understand and your dog will be excited to learn.

Patience, patience....keep your goals small at first and sessions short. Remember these are building blocks to a good foundation. If your dog looses attention, take a break. Remain positive and confident.

Keep it simple. Commands should be short and sweet. Sit, stay, etc. Apply hand signals with vocal commands. Hand gestures are great in the long run because commands can be seen at a distance when your voice can't be heard. What ever you use, keep them consistent.

Repetition and regular practice makes perfect. You can have short mini lessons any time. This keeps it fresh in your dogs mind. You'll find dog obedience training to become second nature and without even realizing you are teaching your dog.

Finally, reward and praise. If your dog performs a command, reward him. Timing is important as well. Praise immediately after the proper response. Tiny steps toward a desired goal are rewardable too if your dog is learning some thing new.

At first this might be a tiny treat to stimulate the behavior/reward signal. Later the praise may something I like to call "life rewards" such as a rub on the belly or a walk.

What ever you use will work because a dog will associate good behavior with praise.

These I believe are the keys to dog obedience trainer training. Is your dog ready to be taught :)

Basic Sit Command

The Sit command is one of the essential skills every dog should learn, and easily mastered with which you can build on for more advanced training methods.


Training the down command is quite similar to the training exercise for the sit command.

Training The Stand Command

At first, you may wonder why training the stand command for obedience training is needed at all. My dog stands all the time!...right! well, the “stand” compliments the down and sit commands.

The Stay Command

Training a dog the stay command is not as hard as you may believe. It’s just an extended version of a sit, down, or stand command.

Training The Come/Re-call Command

Training the come command or recall may be one of the most frustrating and rewarding periods for you as a trainer. It’s a wonderful mechanism to have in your tool kit of commands, and once mastered its rewards are tremendous.

Touch Command and it's benefits

The touch command is probably one of the most underutilized training tools available to us as trainers and owners. Its benefits are gaining our dogs attention and having your dog focus to a target.

Best wishes from dog care basics

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